Installing a roof is one of the most important investments into a home that you could make. For this reason, not having the money to install or repair a roof doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it. In fact, not doing it might not even be an option! That’s because every day that passes may be making it more expensive and more difficult to repair or replace your roof. So, as the saying goes, “Where there’s a will there’s a way!” And you better have the will because there’s no way you’re getting away with not replacing your roof! Here are some options for when it seems like there’s no options.
First, what’s inspiring you to consider replacing your roof? Are you seeing shingles fly off, shingle dust particles (known as granules) collecting on your property, algae growth, or noticing leaks on your ceiling? Then you better repair your roof as soon as possible because it’s possible things will get worse soon! These aren’t signs that your roof may need replacing; these are signs that roof already needed to be replaced!
Before preceding, you need to appreciate why it’s so important to repair or, better yet, replace your roof. If your roof is damaged, you might not even notice the harm you’re causing to your home by holding out. That’s because water can leak into your insulation, drywall, plywood, paint, electrical system, etc. and you might not be able to tell. Don’t let not having the money to replace your roof stop you from getting a consultation! Only an expert will be able to tell you the extent of your potential damage and the cost of your replace.
Why replace and not repair? Because there’s a good chance that repairing your roof will mean throwing away money you can’t afford to throw away. A roof that’s under 10-years-old is a candidate for repairing, but if your roof is 15-years-old or older than a full replace is your best bet. Think of it this way: the money you’d spend repairing your roof a few times over the course of the next several years can be put toward paying off a full replace even if paying it off takes the next several years.
Additionally, many forms of repair actually undermine the integrity of the roof. That’s because by the time your roof needs repairing the shingles are already fragile. So, in the process of spot patching, you end up further damaging adjacent shingles! Or, in the case of adding more shingles, which is highly inadvisable, you end up adding more weight to a roof that’s designed to accommodate a particular amount. A second layer also makes it more likely that the first layer will develop mold since darkness and locked in moisture are mold’s two best friends.
Most homeowner’s insurance policies will only cover roof replacement if its caused by an act of nature. At least, though, your policy is likely to cover such a repair regardless of your roof’s age! This may include damage by snow and ice storms, or hurricane force winds. The insurance company will ultimately be the one to decide what does and doesn’t count as an act of nature. Unfortunately, if the roof needs replacing just because of age then it’s on the homeowner to cover the cost.
Don’t give up hope yet, though. Some insurance companies may partially reimburse you! To make sure you’re not excluded, make sure to take precautionary measures in the future. Maintain your roof, make sure you use roofing materials that your insurance company approves of, and check to see if your insurance company will cover repairs of roofs with more than two layers of shingles (not that this is a desirable option). One way to periodically check if your roof needs repair is by having a trusted contractor provide you with a free estimate.
If you can’t afford to pay all at once then making payments over time may be an ideal option for you. You put together a finance agreement just as you would for a cellphone or car. The range of the monthly payments will depend on the final cost of the replace or repair, but the institution that you make the arrangements with will work to come up with something that works for you. You’ll need to pass a credit check first, but after that it should be smooth sailing.
In some cases, like with Proven Contracting, your contractor can also provide you with financing. The advantage of getting financing with Proven Contracting is that you don’t have to go anywhere else to put together your payment plan and we’ll work to put together a plan that works for you. If your roof replace costs 10 grand, for example, we can take care of it at $138 a month or another figure that works for you!
Yes, if you pay with a credit card you’ll be putting yourself into debt, but you’ll still be paying! Sure, interest rates may mean you’ll pay more, but you’d pay even more than what your interest adds up to if you don’t replace your roof. Remember, damaged insulation or drywall is going to end up costing you more than interest payments! Also, if you have good credit you can get a card with zero interest for a year and, hopefully, pay off the entire project before you even get charged interest, or enough of the project that your interest payments aren’t super high!
When you refinance your home you basically get a new mortgage with more accommodating payment options. You can also get a mortgage for more money than you need and use that money to pay off debts or, in this case, pay for a new roof! Keep in mind that you’ll have to pay closing costs, which may add up to hundreds or even thousands of dollars, as well as interest, but at least you’ll have the money to pay for the new roof!
If money’s tight, you can also refinance so that your new mortgage is also for 30 years. That way your monthly payments will be more manageable even though it’ll theoretically take your longer to pay off your mortgage. If you use some of your cash to pay off high interest debts, however, you should have more money on a monthly basis in general.
The downside of this option is that in the time that it takes you to refinance you risk incurring further damage to your roof and home.
Home equity refers to the percentage of your home that’s actually yours. The more of your mortgage you’ve paid off the more of your home is yours, and the more equity you have.
If you have enough equity in your home and good credit, it’s a good way to get a low interest rate loan instead of getting financing through a program that’s unsecured. A home equity line of credit is often the most advantageous way to get money that’s needed!
To calculate how much you’ll likely be able to borrow, divide your outstanding mortgage balance by your home’s current value. That gives you your loan-to-value ratio (LTV). Lenders typically want to see an LTV of 80% or less, meaning that your home equity is greater than or equal to 20%. Lenders also want you to have a credit score of at least 620, and a credit history that shows that you pay your bills on time. Lastly, lenders want you to have a debt-to-income ratio between 43% and 50%, To calculate your debt to income ratio, add up all your monthly debt payments and divide it by your gross monthly income. So long as you meet all these criteria, you should be good to go!
If you’re still struggling to figure out a way to pay for your roof, try programs that are explicitly designed for people who are struggling. It’s likely you’ll be able to find a grant somewhere in your community! Check with a local church or other charity program. You can always try crowdfunding! And, don’t forget to look into county programs. You may be surprised to discover that you meet the threshold for economic assistance from your local government. With these programs, you can make repairs to your home without having to pay anything back so long as you can certify financial need.
You may have some hesitancy asking for charity or a “hand out”. Think of it as a hand-up instead! Remember, we’re all in it together, so there’s no shame in asking for help! Also remember, the longer you wait to replace your roof the more money you may be handing out to your future contractor. And, if you really feel the need to, you can pay it forward by donating money to the very charity that helped you when you needed it! You can even donate the money you save by replacing your roof right when you needed to.